Our vote is worth


Referents from Orquídeas del Mar gave a note to CoLatino Newspaper, where they deepened their historical claims to the politicians to begin to take into account the voice and needs of sex workers wome

According explanations of Haydee Lainez, President of Orquídeas, there are more than 6,000 sex workers women who vote, but they are not considered by the candidates of political parties when they present their policies. “With our experience, what we see is that every day there are more sex workers women, but since governments do not include us in their proposals, they don’t create opportunities for our people, it is no protection and that’s why we will continue working to influence public policies on issues that concern to us. We want them to understand that consider ourselves as working women is beginning to respect our rights”, said Haydee Lainez, president of Orquídeas del Mar, coordinating organization for the Central American and Caribbean Region of RedTraSex.

Because of stigma and discrimination, candidates see sex workers women as a problem and not as part of the solution. “Sex workers women sector is not taken into account when going to talk about political issues and equality for women. In all these points they do not consider us, as if sex workers women do not exist”, said the president of Orquídeas to the media.

The proposals from our fellows of El Salvador are varied, and range from the creation of ordinances that will help them and avoid further discrimination, inspection of the location where they work, to proposals to improve living conditions of sex workers women who are over 40 years.

Have wherewith

Demonstrating the experience they have to the newspaper CoLatino, fellows frm Orquídeas del Mar are giving various formation and reflection workshops aimed at sex workers women from 8 departments of El Salvador. “So far this year we have organized breakfast meetings for organizations of sex workers women, where we address various issues aimed at both sex workers, males and females, and also human rights, leadership, regulations and ordinances, health and gender, among others”, shared Haydee Lainez.

In their strategy of work, the coordination is as important as training and visibility, so the Salvadoran organization is also developing a strong prevention work on HIV/AIDS not only through Formation workshops, but also in combined campaigns with the Mobile Unit of Fosalud for making cytology, counseling about the risks and risk factors, Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) and HIV testing. This work aims to balance the situation of sex workers women who, in most cases, have no access to health services, either for the opening hours or the stigma that keeps them away from these centers.

With experience, clear positions and strong views, sex workers women of Orquídeas want spaces to participate in defending the rights of sex workers women. They have things to say, just need someone who is willing to listen and do.


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